Chapter 1: Bleary Eyed
Zallach's footfalls were heavy as he ran as hard as he could along the hard floor of the cavern. His lungs breathing in the warm and moist air, air that smelt as though goblins were around.
If Zallach did run into goblins they would be the least of his worries; he had no idea how close or far from death he was. All he knew was that going back was not an option. He could think of any creature in the Underdark and would take his chances against it, even as weapon-less as he was, rather than go back the way he'd come.
He turned a corner and saw the narrowing tunnel, he thanked Lolth for the fact his shoulders were not broad, and for his dark heritage, for apparently she had not completely deserted her favoured race.
His red eyes glowed in the everlasting gloom; the only sounds were his breaths as he squeezed through the small area.
He was hoping against all hopes that this route would lead him to the surface soon. As he'd barely eaten with most of his days and had spent most of his time running. He'd considered going the Ched Nasad, however had had heard that was an even worse idea. His only hope was the surface, maybe his leader Jarlaxle would have made it out, or the closet thing he had to a friend Valas. Had he survived?
Zallach was sure he'd seen Valas fall, however he did have a habit of surviving things. Zallach was surprised he'd escaped with his life, without a scratch in fact.
Zallach was nothing more than a mere commoner in Menzoberranzan; he'd shown his worth in soldiering and fighting with the ranks of Baenre guard. Jarlaxle had noticed Zallach when he'd worked his way up to patrol leader then he'd come free from the female dominated society, working cloak and dagger for the infighting houses. He'd thrived at the side of the other males looking out for themselves. How'd he had enjoyed sinking daggers into the back of those who had betrayed Bregan D'aearthe.
If Zallach wasn't a drow he might have been considered a sociopath, but fortunately he was normal amongst them. Now however, for one of the first times, he felt fear. He was trying to discern whether the footfalls he could hear coming from behind him were in his head or actually there. Had he not been so terrified, he would have stopped to figure out.
As he ran and run he did, as though every female in Menzoberranzan was behind him after his blood, he was sure he could hear an almost alien roaring sound; as though water was moving along the corridor and for all he knew it could well have been. The corridor sloped upwards and the sound came from near the top. He reached what seemed to be the crest of the slope and still saw nothing but a corridor of stone moving along. His eyes in the infrared spectrum could pick nothing but the cold hard stone up ahead. He carried on for much longer and again the corridor slopped upwards.
His hair ruffled around his head as he ran. It was cut quite short for most drow, and only came down to his eyes in front of his face only just covering his ears at the sides. He was by no means as weird looking for that fact that he hung around Jarlaxle enough, to be considered normal. He was currently wearing a top that was once white and was quite tight fighting and was designed to be worn under his armour, which he had ditched as it was heavy and making him tired, His leather trousers where matched with his black knee high boots. Also the typical cloak his piwafwi.
He turned yet another corner and his eyes stung like never before. The pain ripped though his head. Then covering his eyes he let them slowly slip into the other spectrum. There round the corner was light. The roaring sound was louder now and he gingerly stepped forward as he couldn't see the floor properly. Almost stumbling over several times he made it round the bend.
There he saw the exit of the cavern, but it was covered with something moving and bending and refracting the painful light. It was water, water cascaded over the mouth of the cave a constant stream.
He approached the mouth very slowly feeling the cool refreshing water splash towards him and the cold air that filled the cave. He stuck his hand out to the water and felt it cool his arm.
There was a roar, different to the waterfall, Zallach span and there we saw a hideous lizard like creature it's maw was covered with dried blood, and Zallach looked around for the first time and could see many bones littering the floor. He'd obviously in his terror tumbled into the creatures home. It clung to the ceiling, the creature was no bigger than a large dog and with his weapons Zallach would have dispatched the creature in moments. However, alone, weapon less and tired, Zallach did not like to take his chances.
The lizard creature let go off the ceiling span and landed almost soundlessly on the ground. Zallach bent down and scooped up a bone that was big enough to be an orc's at first glance, the lizard hissed and Zallach launched the bone at the creature in desperation. Slamming into the creature, it seemed to do little but irritate it. The lizard then roared and charged forward, understanding it's new foe was harmless. Zallach looked around, then in last ditched attempt to survive he leapt through the water.
What met him was pain; the sun on the surface was in its midday arch. His eyes, first time surfacing, could barely take it. There was also the rushing feeling as he plummeted to the rock pool below. The waterfall behind him was falling many hundreds of feet down of the mountainside of Kelvin's Cairn, the lizard creature had apparently known what was at the back of it's home and had not chased the suicidal drow.
His cloak fluttering behind him, Zallach screamed at the pain in his eyes, when he opened them it stung but he knew the ground was fast approaching. He called upon his innate racial powers to make himself levitate. He tried desperately to fight the gravity. Then he did for a second, he floated in mid-air, he almost cried out in joy. However his powers didn't have much hold out on the surface away from his home city and the powers gave up. He then fell the three feet that was left into rock pool. He'd saved his own life, even though he could barely see the approaching ground. He splashed in the near freezing water. Struggling under the water he undid his cloak that was dragging him down, his head broke the surface and he yelled out for the cold felt as though it was grabbing his bones. The water in his eyes stung, the sun stung them as well. Swimming with all his might his feet touched the shore and he waded up. He made it as far as the bank at the side of the rock pool, completely out the water and on the grass he collapsed his body hitting the ground hard. He passed out, to sleep off his tiring journey in the summer sun on the mountainside, where at least hypothermia would not grab him in his cold clutches.
He slept his body aching all over; in the soft grass he tossed and turned his dreams apparently haunted. Any one walking by would have been disturbed by a drow on the surface. Any one with any experience of drow would have been disturbed to see that it was possible they had bad dreams.